Sunny with a Chance of Ruffles: Teen Swimsuit Trends in 2012


The swimsuit trends have been set by the Teen USA state titleholders and here’s a peek of what we saw:


The color palette for 2012 Teen USA state swimwear was sunny and chic, bright yellows, shades of blue and candy coral. Think a yellow bikini is too much sunshine for your taste? Tone it down with neutral accents, like white ruffles ala Peyton Brown, Miss Alabama Teen USA 2012.

Last year’s Miss Teen USA contestants wore white and purple triangle bikinis. It begs the question; do swimsuit tops and bottoms have to be the same color? Be sure to check the rules of your pageant system before making this decision. If the answer is no, select a lighter color on top and the darker shade on bottom. Speaking of two toned bikinis, did we mention that contrasting colors back in a big way? Contestants paired bright blue with lime green piping, turquoise with bright white trim and neon yellow with vibrant pink bows. These powerful color combinations made for high visibility on stage.

In two of our recent titleholder interviews, coral was proclaimed as being the IT color and we have to admit, we love it too. Coral is very flattering to all skin tones, will add a youthful glow to your complexion and can actually make you look more tan than you are!

You heard it here, color is the new black and whichever you decide upon, pick a shade that will make you happy, allow your skin tone to pop and reveal your self confidence on stage.


These girly trimmings are too cute for Misses but just right for Teens. We enjoyed seeing contestants embrace their feminine side with ruffles. Simple frills added just enough interest to solid swimsuits. They looked great at the neckline and down the middle of one pieces.

Placement of ruffles is everything. Tiny ruffles along the bust or covering an entire bikini top are best for contestants that need to add volume at the chest. For athletic bodies and straighter figures, ruffles at the bottom of bikinis will create a curvier look.


Some states require that the Tees wear one piece swimwear but that didn’t stop contestants from baring their toned bods! Monokini’s, one-piece bathing suits with serious cutouts on the sides, were a popular trend on the pageant stage. The same rule for cutout evening gowns apply for swimwear: accentuate what you love. There are designs that coverage a large part of the tummy area while showing off the right amount of curves at your sides. If you have a natural hourglass shape, these suits were meant for you.

As with all swimwear, wearing a monokini requires a good dose of confidence. That being said, it’s the perfect trend for contestants that have a mental block when it comes to the bikini. Transitioning from pre-teen fitness wear to a full on bikini can be a challenge for young teens; they offer more coverage than a bikini and are more revealing than a traditional one piece.

What’s even more fabulous is that some monokini designs already come fully loaded with rhinestone, chain or beaded details. And what pageant girl doesn’t like a little extra bling?


At Miss USA 2011, Pageant Professors stocked up on feather earrings so we were happy to see the trend come back this year. These oversized earrings were a contestant favorite, particularly in states that require solid swimwear. Colorful earrings were an opportunity for teens to create their own unique style while staying within the wardrobe guidelines. Be warned that if you’re wearing a pair of feathered earrings, don’t go overboard with other statement jewelry because these are powerful enough on their own.

Stacks of bangles were a reoccurring trend at the state pageants. We saw a wide variety of bracelets, from plastic and colorful, to wide and wooden or thin and metallic. Contestants were not afraid to mix and match shapes, designs and colors. More (not less) was the name of the game.

Teens left their straight edged sarongs behind opting for fringed ones this year. Worn low across the hips, these sheer cover-ups embellished with beads, large sequins, and mini shells added lots of glam to this portion of the competition.

However you decide to accessorize your own swimsuit, don’t forget your best accessory, confidence. Wear what you have got with an electric smile and everyone will think you are the best girl for the title. 

What are your favorite swimsuit trends for 2012? What do you think about the ones discussed above? Leave your comments in the section below – we’d LOVE to hear from you!

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  • Crzygirls

    Whats the best way to get rid of un-wanted hair

    • Hi there! There are a number of different ways you can go about hair removal depending on your age, budget, and comfort level! 

      The first is good old fashioned shaving that is appropriate for removing pretty much all body hair. It’s easy, cheap and painless! 

      Second you have waxing which can range in cost depending on areas waxed and obviously has a pain component that may or may not be a determining factor for you. 

      Lastly is laser hair removal which is the most costly of the bunch and is also the most time consuming because it generally requires a number of sessions before the hair is gone completely. 

      Another option is cream hair removal products like Nair but those are only appropriate for some parts of your body (ie NOT your bikini area) and can irritate your skin depending on sensitivity.